Fox is using the VR stunt to promote the Oct. 14 Blu-ray release of "X-Men: Days of Future Past." At its booth on the Comic-Con show floor, the studio will sell limited-edition copies of a Blu-ray box set that includes all the "X-Men" films.
It won't be the only use of an Oculus Rift headset at Comic-Con. Outside the convention center at an interactive zone at Petco Park, Fox is also employing the VR technology to transport users to the fictional town depicted in the TV series "Sleepy Hollow." The second season of the supernatural series is set to debut on the network this fall.
Fox's use of the technology at Comic-Con is the latest example of how Oculus is making in-roads with Hollywood. HBO similarly used the technology to promote "Game of Thrones" with a virtual rendition of the fantasy series' icy 700-foot-tall wall during a recent exhibition.
During a demonstration of the "X-Men" experience to The Associated Press ahead of its Comic-Con debut, the short interactive film narrated by a Patrick Stewart sound-a-like mimicked what it might look like to roll into the iconic domed Cerebro chamber depicted in the "X-Men" films and harness Professor X's telepathic powers to spot characters like Wolverine in a crowd.
Over the past three years, Oculus' immersive VR technology, which covers users' eyes and reacts to head movement, has received considerable attention from video game developers, but it hasn't been released yet for consumers. Facebook purchased the company behind the technology earlier this year for $2 billion.
Several networks, studios and publishers use Comic-Con to hype their upcoming entertainment releases with premieres, panels, autograph sessions, one-time-only stunts and interactive attractions in downtown San Diego. This year's promotional efforts include Ubisoft's "Assassin's Creed: Unity" obstacle course and Paramount and Pizza Hut's full-size replica of the Pizza Thrower vehicle — complete with a working pizza-tossing cannon — from "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles."